ardelle's Profile

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Sad News About FoodFuser

Speaking on behalf of Scargod (who had communicated with Dawson on occasion), Dawson will be another Chowhound friend he never met but had great admiration for.
It is sad. Sad to know of a person dying who was bright, good and kind and contributed so much to this world being a better and more joyful place.

Dec 23, 2012
ardelle in Site Talk
1

We're Back! (And looking for Thai and Mexican in Vancouver/Richmond area)

No. I did find it though! It's on my map: http://maps.google.com/maps/ms?msid=2...
Tandoori King Restaurant
8017 Fraser Street
Vancouver, BC, Canada
(604) 327-3355
tandooriking.com

I tried to make reservations at Vij's and was informed that they did not take reservations and that it would be an hour plus wait this evening, almost regardless of when we came. Forget that!

Feb 09, 2012
ardelle in B.C. (inc. Vancouver)

We're Back! (And looking for Thai and Mexican in Vancouver/Richmond area)

Thanks for the info. I was afraid that you would give me a depressing account of Mexican and Indian restaurants.
On one trip we ate at an Indian place that was on lower Granville (I'm pretty sure), that was decent, but I can't find it to save my life! It had sort of a garden entrance. It was not Mirchi.
Thanks for the help. Still wishing we could make one of your get-togethers.

Feb 09, 2012
ardelle in B.C. (inc. Vancouver)

We're Back! (And looking for Thai and Mexican in Vancouver/Richmond area)

Me and hubby (http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/6141...), are here once again and have five more days to take in the food of the Vancouver area. We have eaten at Blue Water Cafe, Earl's and Salathai so far.
We are wondering if there is any decent Mexican to be found? By my research that seems to be a stretch. Indian?
Also, we thought the Richmond area to be the focal point for all things Asian. Is that the place to look for Thai? We thought Salathai was fair, but would like better. We will be in Richmond several times while here.
We are staying downtown. Is there anything we should not miss?

Feb 08, 2012
ardelle in B.C. (inc. Vancouver)

What is your experience with Charles at Smugglers Cove?

Ever since we twice ate at Charles at Smugglers Cove in the course of a week I have been perplexed and fascinated by it. The restaurant seems somewhat inscrutibale and the hostess and wife of the chef/owner a paradox and enigma. There are no Chowhound reviews of the restaurant that I can find!

Our experience over the two meals: Raw oysters were good, though there were some shell bits. The bouillabaisse was good, if not slightly overcooked. Tournedos of beef were good, the rack of lamb was ordinary and my salmon overcooked and the portion small. I sent the salmon back and received another small piece. The standard sides were pedestrian and didn't vary. Virtually the same regardless of main entree. The spinach was thick and heavy on nutmeg the first time and delicate and decent the next night. Same for the clichéd potatoes au gratin, carrots and cauliflower. I saw the same tired dessert tray just like the reviewer in 2002 did, though the apple tart was great both nights. The chocolate and berry torte dessert was also good.The tablecloths all have dark spots from grease-stains. I'm not saying they're dirty, they are all just stained.
The owner was a little too friendly and we felt her odd at times. I read that she liked to speak French and that her husband is French. I found that when we conversed briefly in French, there were glaring errors in her speech and I don't think she understood one comment I made!
Service was slow at times and not always at a top-notch professional level you would expect. With the owner serving us a bottle of red, I implied that I wanted it decanted and she did not immediately "get it" and offer to do it. Then, she seemed inexperienced at decanting. Her husband, the chef, does not always cook. It seemed he was taking the night off on our second experience.
I think what has caused this curiosity, investigation and long post is that we were overcharged on a $200 meal by exactly 10 percent. I looked at the itemized total and then that document was missing when I received the bill to sign.

I went digging since there were no Chowhound reviews. A paid, professional writer said the food was "so-so". Others said similar things and talked about it being overpriced.
From a 2002 Seattle Times restaurant review: "We had reservations on the deck, or thought we did, one balmy August night, but Madame Faure whisked us upstairs to one of two equally well-appointed dining rooms. A wedding was occupying the whole first floor.
When I complained that we weren't told about the wedding when we booked the table two days ago, no apology was forthcoming. "You should have been told," she snapped, in a way that suggested we had somehow screwed up." " The reviewer, after a second meal, said he would not go back.

A majority of people who bothered to post an internet review say it is good French food. A few complained of the food, the cost for small portions and the "nutty woman". She was called rude more than once.
Quotes from the internet:
"The owner, Janet, is the most insane person I have ever encountered."
" the older gal is very rude! Treated us poorly, not sure if I will come back to experience her." (That older gal was the owner and hostess!)
In 2010, a couple had reservations and were turned away because "the chef is very tired".
On top of that, I read that two wedding events in 2009 were handled poorly and one accused the woman of being crooked and estimated that she overcharged her by $2000 on liquor for her event.

What do you have to add? Obviously, we thought enough of our first meal, which the chef seemed to be involved in, to go back for a second meal. A one-time meal experience there might seem well worth it.

Jan 16, 2012
ardelle in Greater Seattle

Excellent Authentic Mexican In A Nice Setting

I found that Tacos Guaymas http://www.chow.com/restaurants/58241... has good lingua tacos and, being a small, local chain, have quite a few locations in north Seattle.

Jan 14, 2012
ardelle in Greater Seattle

If you could only eat in five Seattle restaurants for the rest of your life, which would you choose?

No, I'm sorry... I really thought I had linked this review to Preservation Kitchen. That's what it is about. I will copy and paste the above to their restaurant page.

Jan 12, 2012
ardelle in Greater Seattle

If you could only eat in five Seattle restaurants for the rest of your life, which would you choose?

This was a pretty expensive faux high-end meal. I'm not blaming anyone for suggesting it, but it was a pretty mediocre meal.
We had the short-rib appetizer. It had inedible thin, stringy green onion on top of the meat. Looked too much like grass or chopped sutures. Absolutely nothing to write home about. C+.
He started with the leek, potato and bacon soup. While tasty, it was ground to mush and somewhat sweet. B+
He had the rockfish. This was fairly a fairly small portion swimming in a coarse and grainy, cheezy sauce that was supposed to be Butternut squash puree. He didn't get the butternut at all and the fish was overwhelmed by the bowl-full of sauce. On top was a few sprigs of broccolini. C-
I had an order of "bibb lettuce and potato salad". Quote: "Bibb Lettuce & Potato Salad. Roasted baby potatoes, daikon, basil, onion ash marmalade". This dish was a few, undercooked potato slices with some basil puree and an egg. That's it folks... No bibb lettuce, no daikon and no marmalade and where did the egg come from? We sent the potatoes back to be cooked. They were rare-hard and not to our liking.
I asked for the drink menu and had to ask for it again.
We shared the bread pudding. It was some bread pudding mixed with a deconstructed cinnamon roll and vanilla ice cream. Perhaps a few nuts were thrown in. Tasty, but not much that was from scratch and not really a bread pudding dessert. C
This and four drinks was $101. It is a nice restaurant, setting, though loud. It is a house and the walls are hard and nothing has been done to tone things down.
Service was average. It was too pricey and pretentious for us.

Jan 11, 2012
ardelle in Greater Seattle

Above average dining in the general area of Shoreline - Lynnwood?

Thanks for the recommendation of Hill's. They have a decent wine list. Not necessarily all the usual suspects. We had a nice bottle of Santa Ema Carmenere that was only $30. Food was good. I wrote a full review in the restaurant area, but forgot to mention the wine list. It was quite noisy, but calmed down a lot by 8PM. Very good location in Shoreline, but tucked away in a dark corner...

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Hills' Food Wine Catering
1843 NW 195th St, Shoreline, WA 98177

Jan 07, 2012
ardelle in Greater Seattle

Franks' Oyster House

Though we've not been to many restaurants downtown, we've been to Cutter's, Maximilien, Nell's, Ray's Boathouse, Lark, the original Ivar's Salmon House and many more and considered Frank's a lesser value. It is a cute place.

Jan 05, 2012
ardelle in Greater Seattle

Franks' Oyster House

Oysters were good and small. They were $2.25 each; no discount for a dozen. Food was very pricey for the portion size. I had a rare burger for $14. It was only medium rare and a rather small burger. He had sturgeon. A very small piece; about 2-14" square, for $26. Came with very few small potatoes, some frizee and four small chunks of beet.
While better than average food and an interesting place, I don't think we will go back unless it's for the happy hour oysters

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Frank's Oyster House & Champagne Parlor
2616 NE 55th, Seattle, WA 98105

Jan 05, 2012
ardelle in Greater Seattle

Above average dining in the general area of Shoreline - Lynnwood?

We had an OK lunch there. Pretty standard stuff. The restaurant is pretty nicely appointed. Good service. We were the only people there at 2PM.
We has Yellow Curry with prawns. What makes a prawn a prawn and not a shrimp? Sure seemed like average shrimp to me. There was supposed to be tomato in the dish and there was none.
The chicken with vegetables was more Chinese than Thai. It was good, but again nothing special.
May try dinner menu and see if it fares better than the standard discount lunch food. May not...

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Full Moon Thai Cuisine
1441 NW Richmond Beach Rd, Shoreline, WA 98177

Jan 05, 2012
ardelle in Greater Seattle

Above average dining in the general area of Shoreline - Lynnwood?

Amazing authentic, down and dirty Mexican food in a fast-food like setting. Thanks for the recommendation. Even earlier, perhaps over a year ago a Chowhound recommended the one in Marysville, so since I need to be in Marysville, I went there.
While this is a small chain of nine locations, it is impressive food; at least at this location. I had a chile relleno and the poblano chile had a little fire and great Mexican cheese inside. The chile sauce, served on top, is homemade (!) and tasted heavenly. I had a lingua (tongue), taco. The meat was shredded and came with a little green salsa on top and a double corn tortilla, just as it should be. It was very good. I also got the chicken tamale plate and ate a little of the tamale. It was just right. Beans and rice were good and made just as they should be, which means they are nothing to write home about, but lousy if not cooked right, old, dry or soupy. The restaurant is very open, with huge panes of glass all around. They serve beer, but no wine. I asked about bringing in wine and the manager could not answer me. He said he had to ask the "big man". This place has little ambience. A soccer match was on the TV. Since I ate alone, ambiance was not my first priority. I had several Negra Modellos and left full and happy with a chicken tamale plate to go under my arm. I'm having some of it for breakfast this morning with eggs and salsa. ¡Hurra para un desayuno mexicano

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Tacos Guaymas
1400 State Ave, Marysville, WA 98270

Jan 04, 2012
ardelle in Greater Seattle

Need recommendation for restaurant with good scallop dish

A few days back I had one done with an Asian flair at Nell's. It was part of their chef's tasting menu.
In Connecticut we call the big ones diver scallops and the small (almost worthless ones, IMHO), bay scallops. Are they called the same here? A slightly tanned and hot scallop that is not cooked much is one of my favorite seafoods to eat or fix at home. It is so sweet and delicate of flavor that I detest ham-fisted, overseasoned preparations. Simple is better.

Jan 04, 2012
ardelle in Greater Seattle

Judy Fu Snappy Dragon

http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/7754...
As I said, I did not investigate it, so it's my own fault. I don't know my way around the town or what areas are known for what, or density of ethnicity, other than a few basic areas.

Dec 31, 2011
ardelle in Greater Seattle

Judy Fu Snappy Dragon

I think they're calling it Chiang's Gourmet. That looks like the real deal! My hubby (dogracs), WILL go there for lunch and test the waters. I think we want to try Bamboo Garden and Seven Stars Szechuan, too.

BTW, I took a Chowhound recommendation for Snappy D without looking further. Had I done any homework you would have not seen me set foot in there.

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Seven Stars Pepper Szechuan Restaurant
1917 S Jackson St, Seattle, WA

Bamboo Garden
202 106th Pl NE, Bellevue, WA 98004

Chiang Gourmet Restaurant
7845 Lake City Way NE, Seattle, WA 98115

Dec 31, 2011
ardelle in Greater Seattle

Above average dining in the general area of Shoreline - Lynnwood?

We were disappointed by Snappy Dragon last night (I posted a review). For lunch we went to Las Margaritas again. They have an "Original" margarita that they make from fresh limes that is quite good! It is not on the list of margaritas that they have on their menu. I found the nopalitos con carne de puerco (cactus with pork), to be quite good. Too bad La Casa Azul is not open for lunch...

Nell's Restaurant was quite the treat on Thursday night. I reviewed it.
We are still interested in suggestions as we will be around a while longer. Please note that fast-food like places usually won't serve beer or wine and that is a prerequisite.
Regarding Indian food (and Asian food), as I mentioned elsewhere; we are still looking for something really good, even if it is a half-hour or so away (like downtown).

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Nell's Restaurant
6804 E Green Lake Way North, Seattle, WA 98115

Las Margaritas
14356 Aurora Ave N, Seattle, WA 98133

La Casa Azul
14419 Greenwood Ave N, Seattle, WA 98133

Snappy Dragon
8917 Roosevelt Way NE, Seattle, WA 98115

Dec 31, 2011
ardelle in Greater Seattle

Judy Fu Snappy Dragon

We can't believe a Seattle Chowhound recommended this place to us, however, I do realize that some like this style of food for what it is... Afterwards, we are amazed that this restaurant has seemingly received accolades and awards! There was a short wait for a table. There was a packed entrance, with people waiting outside when we arrived (on this Friday night at 7PM).

When seated, what we saw were large, piled-high, home-style plates of food. I think most people were eating noodle-based dishes; apparently because the noodles are homemade. The noodles looked a lot like spaetzle on steroids... We did not try them. If the pan-fried vegetable potstickers were an indication of the noodles then you can keep them, too. The potsticker wrapper was very thick, tough and chewy. This is not how a dumpling should be... I could barely cut into them with my fork. The filling was flavorful, but just pedestrian, finely chopped frozen spinach from a bag as its base.

The "Sliced Cod" was battered and fried. The menu does not state this! The batter on the fish, like the potstickers, was thick, heavy and tough. The fish itself was good. I did not get it with black bean sauce. At the time, I did not realize that I did not get it with the correct sauce, as I had asked for.

Our very plain "chicken with garlic and vegetables in Szechwan sauce" was very salty, smothered in sauce and there was no garlic to be found or tasted. Did they get this order wrong, too? That would be two orders wrong! Many pieces of bell pepper (in both our dishes), were too big to be bite-sized. In contrast, the fish dish had a few peas and small cubes of carrot; again, as if out of a frozen food package from Sysco.
For both our dishes, we found the food floating in a sea of sweet and salty reddish goo.

The only positives about this meal is that the portions are large and the ingredients were fresh and of good quality.
My first glass of red wine was absolute plonk! I sent it back and the replacement wine was OK. It seems they opened a new box for me. My hubby played it safe and drank Tsingtao beer.

This is not real Chinese food as we know it. It is the over-sweet, over-salty, over-sauced, heavy-handed Americanized version, that many have come to know from all the corner dives that sell it. Kind of like pizza places...
It is popular with families. The restaurant is very noisy. The walls of this former house are hard and bare. There were no Asians here that we saw, except for employees...

Service was acceptable. Our waitress wore a Snappy Dragon T-shirt with holes in it.
If you are into take-out, large portions for a fair price, think Sweet and Sour Pork is the pinnacle of Chinese food or have never eaten where Asians eat, then you will not be disappointed!

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Snappy Dragon
8917 Roosevelt Way NE, Seattle, WA 98115

Dec 31, 2011
ardelle in Greater Seattle

Need eatery in North Seattle

I cannot endorse Snappy Dragon unless you like the very typical Americanized version of Chinese. I found the dumplings (for us it was fried potstickers) to be huge, a huge amount (six big ones), and hugely inedible.

Dec 31, 2011
ardelle in Greater Seattle

Clay Pit Cuisine of India. Almost a stellar experience.

I like that "soiling their namesake" comment.
So where are the "TOP" places in Seattle? I'm willing to go as far as downtown from Lynnwood.

Dec 31, 2011
ardelle in Greater Seattle

Above average dining in the general area of Shoreline - Lynnwood?

OTOH, Nell's last night was fabulous and a real treat to find. I had hanger steak and hubby had the Chef's tasting menu and shared. The scallop, the tenderloin..., my hanger steak; everything was perfect and creatively seasoned. I particularly liked the palm heart and small chunks of lime and fennel with the scallop.
Andrew went out of his way to please hubby with the wines by the glass; offering a number of tastes and a free glass of white when he did not care for the pinot noir.

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Nell's Restaurant
6804 E Green Lake Way North, Seattle, WA 98115

Dec 30, 2011
ardelle in Greater Seattle

Above average dining in the general area of Shoreline - Lynnwood?

Ouch, but generally true of hotel restaurants. Sometimes I get back from my medical duty at 7:30 and just don't feel like going out. You can find decent items on their menu and generally they cook it like you want it. I've had great rare skirt steak in a salad one night and tough medium rare the next time. Certainly inconsistency is the rule.

Dec 30, 2011
ardelle in Greater Seattle

Above average dining in the general area of Shoreline - Lynnwood?

I had some ca ca there today for lunch. Dry, tasteless meat for chicharones and dry, tasteless chicken in the Arroz Con Pollo. The rice in this dish was pretty good, but had no heat. It was supposed to have hot peppers in it. I saw a little pepper skin.
I paid almost $20 for these two minimalist dishes and a Sprite. I had to go back and ask for the Sprite they forgot to give me. Never mind the minimalist hole-in-the-wall nature of the place and food and wrappers on the floor. Where I sat, my foot was sliding on the floor. I don't think there was a clean table in the place.
I will not return.

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Pollos A La Brasa San Fernando
20815 67th Ave W Ste 208, Lynnwood, WA 98036

Dec 27, 2011
ardelle in Greater Seattle

Above average dining in the general area of Shoreline - Lynnwood?

Sorry, I don't know Shari's so I can't compare. Let's just say that we have now eaten at Scott's four times and they are consistently good. Not always great, but way above average. Service is always professional. It is better than most meals we have had at the Embassy Suite's, McCarthy's Bar and Grill. It has a good selection of draft beers and scotches. Wine selection by the glass is very adequate and the bottle selection is certainly not chain restaurant-like.
The prime rib was very good. I enjoyed the chicken alfredo-like dish. Burgers have been good. I thought the Spicy Thai chicken sandwich was not spicy and a let-down for not tasting like anything Thai. Still, it was a good sandwich. Fries are always very good and on the larger size so the insides are moist and tender.
We liked it enough that we bought ourselves a $100 gift certificate (so we got a $20 bonus card for free...) and they GAVE us $40 of gift certificates on one visit!

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Scott's Bar & Grill
8115 Lake Ballinger Way, Edmonds, WA 98026

Dec 27, 2011
ardelle in Greater Seattle

Excellent Authentic Mexican In A Nice Setting

Si. Tacos al Pastor:
Barbecued pork smothered in our house made sauce, topped with pineapple, cilantro and onions
between a freshly made tortilla. Three per order- $7.50
I wished they had lengua... ;(

Dec 27, 2011
ardelle in Greater Seattle

BYOB in Seattle

I am: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/8237...
I plan on continuing to report on what I find and like; me and my faithful sidekick/photographer. I don't know when this will end. We are in an extended stay mode because of an ill relative.
Pic from the deck of Ray's Boathouse.

Dec 22, 2011
ardelle in Greater Seattle

Visiting Dec 26-28 -- what not to miss?

We thought Lark's food was very impressive. The food is quite pricey for what you get... but it had very creative dishes.

Dec 22, 2011
ardelle in Greater Seattle

BYOB in Seattle

My recent experience is that if a restaurant doesn't have a liquor license they won't allow you to bring in alcohol.

Dec 22, 2011
ardelle in Greater Seattle

Above average dining in the general area of Shoreline - Lynnwood?

Thanks to bighound and "val ann c" for the tip on Scott's Bar and Grill! We were so blown away by lunch that we made reservations for dinner and thoroughly enjoyed it as well.
While it is big and noisy, the service was top-notch (though they did not crumb the table), and the food was excellent.
For lunch we had the crab and artichoke appetizer, spicy chili with a Caesar salad and open-faced, chicken, miniature soft tacos. I was surprised by the pulled-meat and spiciness of the chili. Though it had a few beans in it, you wouldn't find any Texan (I know), turning their nose up at it!
For dinner we had the rare prime rib (with a great, mild, freshly grated horseradish) and fish tacos. Another great meal and excellent service. I/we were able to watch the kitchen and waitstaff during our meal and it was amazing, well-choreographed mayhem for two hours of being packed with customers.

Management (if you're listening): If you mention that you are a "first-timer" at Scott's you are offered the crab and artichoke appetizer for $8 rather than $14. It is a bargain, either way; it's delicious. However, we were led to believe that it was an amuse bouche... a gift. It was brought to us and placed in front of us without prior discussion or request. There was something said about "since we were first-time customers" here's this if you want it. We reacted with gosh, gee thanks, etc. IF there was anything mentioned about it costing anything, we both missed it! This was a big surprise when I later went over the bill to do this write-up.
We spent $80 plus gratuity for lunch and then $101 plus gratuity for dinner. Pretty good deal considering what we had and how good it was.
Sorry about the images! We dug into our food before we thought to photograph it :(

Dec 22, 2011
ardelle in Greater Seattle

Above average dining in the general area of Shoreline - Lynnwood?

I do require ambiance at a certain level. I don't like dives or places that smell funky. I require wine with my meal. I don't mind small or quirky. Neither of us like "loud".
My hubby is the food expert (and does 98% of the cooking at home). He used to be on Chowhound. He will eat anywhere and try anything... a true Chowhound Jim Leff would be proud of! So he may try some of these places and will probably try and coax me to go to some of them if he likes them.
Today, because of a medical appointment at a Swedish Hospital facility in "Ballard" (Seattle), we went to Ray's Boathouse; actually, the upstairs "Ray's Cafe". This was a fantastic meal and a great experience.
Thank you all for the input and we will report back; and don't stop making suggestions!

Dec 20, 2011
ardelle in Greater Seattle